21 March 2008

It's Cold Outside

Seeing as it is, still, only March it would be unreasonable to expect warm, barmy days just yet. Which is good because it's bloody cold out there (comparatively) We were out on the road today, the road into and past Lynn were chocka with big cars pulling caravans, to spend Easter in Norfolk, however coming back home this afternoon the roads were quiet. Last Easter the traffic was far heavier, but it was warmer as Easter was later in the year.
But even I can tell that no matter how cold it is right now spring is definitely getting here, the hedgerows are greening up, the fields are vibrant with the young shoots of whatever is being grown in them. I drive through the countryside Monday to Friday it is a bit closer to nature than I actually would care to be, I am a townie at heart and like my nature to be well cared for botanical gardens or people friendly parks surrounded by the comfort of civilisation or failing that bricks and mortar. So although I am getting this exposure to the great outdoors on a much more frequent basis I am still almost completely blissfully ignorant of what happens in the countryside around me. Frankly if it doesn't happen in the Archers then do not expect me to know. I only found out that there was type of tree called a silver birch last month and I knowingly saw my first one today when Simon point one out to me. And to be honest I'm still not 100% sure that he's not pulling my leg.


  1. Back in the days when I worked in conservation, I was at a meeting concerning environmental education. We were discussing means of instilling a sense of value - of nature and the environment. One of my colleagues told us of the problems she had faced in this endeavour: In trying to explain the difference between animals in zoos and those out in their rightful, natural habitat, she asked the classes of children to imagine they were the animals and where would they prefer to be - locked up in a cage or roaming the wild? The vast majority of children opted for cosey captivity, and were terrified by that-which-lurks-behind-a-securely-closed-door. It didn't matter if they lived in towns or villages. The results were the same. Faced with this fear of the unpaved and unknown, we had to think up a new approach...

  2. He's not pulling your leg this time, jane - there is a tree called a silver birch!

    Very few places in Britain are as wild as Norfolk at this time of year. You get a good north-easterly wind howling down the North Sea and there's nothing between us and the Arctic Circle!

  3. ....and of course there is also the copper birch.
    The silver birch is often considered something of a weed in the railway world as it grows anywhere, and very quickly.
    I however have two in my garden, and the silvery white bark looks fab against darker surfaces.

  4. just wait until you get to the downy birch (betula pubescens, titter titter)!

    I know I'm a week late, but I can't resist a bit of puerile chat.